Response to: Building a New Science of Recovery

Anyone who’s followed my blogging knows I’ve been concerned about the destabilization of our understanding of recovery. And, if I’m being honest, the Recovery Science Research Collaborative’s definition (which Austin blogged about yesterday) has been characteristic of the the kind of definition that concerns me.

Well, I think I finally get what he’s going for with this definition. (I can be a little slow on the uptake.) For the purpose of researching recovery, I finally see that it makes sense to cast the net wide and work backward. If I understand correctly, this is a starting point from which to develop a better understanding of recovery rather than an endpoint.

So . . . it makes sense for the purposes of research, AND I still worry about its potential to influence thinking outside of an operationalized definition for the purpose of research.

What happens if policy makers, practitioners, and systems administrators adopt this definition, or others like it? How would these changes affect what it means to call a program or system recovery-oriented? What would differentiate a recovery-oriented provider from others? What risks would these changes pose?

If there are important research benefits to such a definition AND there are risks in other domains, what strategies can and should be used to mitigate those risks?

If you’re confused and want to better understand my concerns, read this.



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